Web-based writing apps

Je
Jeremiah
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Thu Sep 27, 2012 1:36 am Post

I have been looking at web-based writing programs like Yarny and Fast Pencil. The idea is to be able to use them on any computer, Mac or PC, at any time. They seem a little lean in features, but they are serviceable.

Has anyone used either of them yet? How are they?

Tr
Tripper
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Wed Oct 03, 2012 10:53 am Post

And you don't want to use Scrivener because... :wink:
The person who says it can't be done should not interrupt the person doing it.

Sp
SpringfieldMH
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Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:30 am Post

It's a fast evolving category, that I know little about and am leery of based on the little I know. Seems more fad-of-the-week than anything... but anything is possible and something solid and useful may eventually present itself. Be leery of those that retain some portion of your rights or require you to publish through them.

But, Google Docs... if you are interested in literally being able to do realtime collaboration with another person... and utilizing other parts of Google's infrastructure.

I've listened to podcast discussions by authors who have tried web based fiction writing and they seem to go back to Scrivener, due to its far superior features, even though it doesn't support real-time collaboration (which turns out they really didn't even need, even though they are collaborators).
I'm a Scrivener enthusiast and experienced in PC/network support... but I am not a Scrivener expert. And I'm still editing on my first book. So take any opinion or advice I offer with a large grain of salt.

dr
druid
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Wed Jan 02, 2013 11:23 am Post

A couple of threads in the forum touch on this topic, but no consensus has emerged yet.
A quick check of Google (http://tinyurl.com/allqv6g) suggests that up to now
Web-based writing apps are mostly used for writing instruction.

So far, I've tried out SimpleNote, Outliner of Giants, and Google Docs.
SimpleNotes is great for creating quick notes/drafts to synch with Scrivener.
Outliner is rather cumbersome, but it does create outlines.
Google Docs is full-featured, robust, and has good export and collaboration features.
But it does not have Scrivener's ease of outlining, formatting, or compiling.

I should also mention EverNote and SpringPad.
In both, you may write RTF files in outline arrangement.
But export is limited, and the display of Web pages quite mixed.

So far, Google Docs seems the best alternative, but it's not Scrivener.

Je
Jeremiah
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Sun Mar 10, 2013 12:02 am Post

Thanks to all who replied. I will stick with Scrivener, but I am always curious about what else is out there.

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Typo
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Mon Mar 18, 2013 7:04 pm Post

With a really huge project I have just migrated to Google Docs (Google Drive, to be precise).

For the first time in years I was afraid to open the Scriv file of this novel. I had amassed a huge amount of reference material, I had written many different outlines, with elements and scenes from those mashed into three different manuscript versions. And I had not really used the meta data to keep everything organised - that was my own fault. But it was too late - the binder was exploding and just looking at all that text was depressing.

So I decided to take the current version of the novel, put it in one long Google Doc, structure it the classic way with headlines and use the old Scriv file just for looking up the research and old notes - kind of like a database.

It's exactly what I was hoping for: Using Google Drive I can edit this manuscript on any device, including iPad and the Galaxy Note 2. Of course, the whole thing is backed up every time there's a connection, so no worries there. Most of all, I needed to look straight at my manuscript without all that old baggage. Yes, it's also possible within Scrivener, but I guess moving the whole thing to a new environment was a psychological issue first and foremost. :)

I've found Google Spreadsheets to be usable, too, so I've moved some lists over there. Currently I'm really happy in the Google ecosystem and can agree with this article in many aspects. And yes, I even consider a Chromebook ...

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Typo
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Tue Mar 19, 2013 8:32 am Post

Typo wrote:And yes, I even consider a Chromebook ...


... which is funny because: http://chrome.blogspot.de/2013/03/bring ... tiers.html

dr
druid
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Tue Mar 19, 2013 10:05 am Post

Since I switched from Safari to Chrome,
I work most of the time in Chrome.
I take notes with SimpleNote or EverNote,
Make longer drafts with G Docs or Sheets
And have begun to play with MindMeister,
A freeform way of arranging ideas and info.
Most of my old standbys (Things, Bento)
Are standing idle. Only Scrivener and
DevonThink remain indispensable.

Je
Jeremiah
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Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:04 pm Post

Great replies. Thanks to all.